Chimney Sweep

Yosemite’s Ahwahnee Resort will shut for 2 months to endure $31.6 million in seismic upgrades

Photo of Joel Umanzor

october 11, 2022Updated: Oct. 13, 2022 6:32pm

Opened in 1927, the Ahwahnee Hotel in Yosemite is one of the “great lodges” of the US National Parks system. Many guests have reported strange happenings on the hotel’s sixth floor. (Courtesy of Yosemite National Park Service/MCT)

Handout, HO/MCT

The famous 95-year-old Ahwahnee Hotel at Yosemite National Park will be closed for 8 weeks at the beginning of 2023 for seismic upgrades, according to the park.

The $31.6 million project — funded by the Great American Outdoors Act of 2020 — consists of a major seismic upgrade throughout the hotel as well as a kitchen renovation, according to a Yosemite National Park press release. Kitchen project work is currently underway and the seismic safety upgrade will begin near the end of the year.

“The Ahwahnee is a crown jewel of national park lodges” said Cicely Muldoon, Yosemite National Park superintendent. “This much-needed work will ensure the Ahwahnee is seismically safe for present and future generations of Yosemite visitors.”

The seismic support upgrade will focus on bracing the chimneys and support walls, replacing window frames and dining room glass in high use visitor areas, the release added. The current central cooling system will also be updated along with improvements to the fireplace.

The Ahwahnee — which opened in 1927, contains 97 guest rooms and 24 cottages — will be closed for reservations from Jan. 2 till March 2 and will not be accepting reservations during that time due to the construction.

Famous visitors to the historic park have included presidents and international dignitaries such as John F. Kennedy and Queen Elizabeth II.

Joel Umanzor (he/him) is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. Email:

Joel Umanzor joined The San Francisco Chronicle as a breaking news reporter in 2022. A 2021-2023 Hearst Fellow, he was previously a breaking news reporter on The Houston Chronicle’s Metro desk.

Originally from Richmond, Calif., Umanzor graduated from San Francisco State University in 2021. When not in the newsroom or chasing down a source, he can be found painting, listening to hip-hop or watching sports.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button